Monday, August 19, 2013

Prayer for a new school year

Dear God of new beginnings,

We are grateful for a new season, even as we reluctantly let go of the freedom of summer.
We look forward to a new school year with equal parts excitement and fear.  Although we know not what is ahead, you plant curiosity in our hearts.

We are your creation and we hold within us your dreams, and hopes that are bigger than we are.  They call us to leave the familiar and seek wisdom, to find what is new, to grow.  We are eager to explore new possibilities, carrying fresh new tools in backpacks still shiny and unworn.

That journey carries us away on school buses that seem impossibly big, while mamas worry about whether they'll find their way.  It inspires us to load up our parents' car with all our important belongings, making it look so small, as we wonder, "Will I find my way?"

New beginnings can also feel like endings when we leave behind so much that we love.  Help us to find home in new places, to be home in ourselves.  As we search far and wide for the answers, draw us deeper into your great mysteries, that somehow, lead us back to our beginnings, to our roots.  Let us find a thirst for knowledge that never runs dry, but satisfy us with an understanding that we are enough, and that you provide what we need.

As we learn, broaden our horizons, increase our vision, so that we can see just how big and small and beautiful and brutal our world can be.  May we see those who journey with us as neighbors, no matter how different we may seem, and guide us to bond over commonalities and learn from what makes us unique.  Grow our hearts as our minds expand, so that we instinctively love through acts of service and work to break down barriers of injustice in our shared world.  Unify us as brothers and sisters in your great family.

Help us to find our way, to find our place in your story, and to find companions on the journey.  Give us minds to absorb the complexities of your world, and respect for the privilege of education.  Bring a sense of peace and eyes to see your presence all around us.  Allow our hearts to trust the path ahead.

Grant wisdom, patience, and courage to those who teach and lead, and renew our passion as learners.
Keep us ever seeking and inspired as you daily breathe new life into us.

In your love we pray, Amen.

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